Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Whence energy?

Future Energy: Opportunities and Challenges

Tom Kerlin retired as head of the Nuclear Engineering Department at the University of Tennessee in 1998, after serving on the faculty for 33 years. His professional interests include instrumentation, nuclear reactor simulation, and dynamic testing for model validation. He has published extensively on these topics. 

In addition to his university service, Dr. Kerlin founded a spin-off company, Analysis and Measurement Services Corp., to provide the nuclear industry with the testing capability that he invented for safety system sensors. His method has been used hundreds of times in nuclear power plants throughout the world. Upon retiring, Dr. Kerlin studied the literature on energy production and use and concluded that there was a need for a comprehensive book on our future options that even non-specialists would understand. This book is the result.

The entire world faces daunting questions about how energy is produced and how it is used. Conservation and improved energy efficiency can help in reducing energy requirements, but cannot halt the steady increase in energy consumption. Increasing world population and increasing energy appetites in emerging economies are creating competition for energy resources for all nations.

The possibilities for future energy production include fossil fuels (oil, natural gas, coal, oil sands, and oil shale), biofuels, solar, wind, hydroenergy, geothermal and nuclear (probably fission and possibly fusion). Each of these sources has relative advantages and disadvantages. The problem is to produce enough sustainable energy while avoiding unacceptable environmental consequences, especially climate change.

This new 644 page book will help in informing decisions about which energy production technologies to support and which energy use technologies and lifestyle options to implement.

Future Energy: Opportunities and Challenges
by Thomas W. Kerlin, ISA Publication, Hardback, ISBN: 978-1-937560-28-7

Dr Kerlin is the co-author, with Mitchel Johnson, of the recently published, Practical Thermocouple Thermometry, Second Edition, (ISBN 978193756-0270)

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